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  • LADEE Mission Control: All stations, this is

  • LADEE mission on Ops. All criteria for LADEE

  • impact verification have been met. Operating

  • LADEE was the definition of a team effort and all

  • of you should be extremely proud of our collective

  • accomplishment. And so with that, Flight, you are

  • "Go!" to close out LADEE mission operations.

  • Narrator: With those words, NASA's LADEE mission

  • came to an end as the spacecraft spacecraft executed

  • a planned de-orbit into the surface of the Moon

  • at nearly three thousand, six hundred miles per hour.

  • Butler Hine: We spent all of our fuel going after

  • the really valuable low-altitude science,

  • which means you have nothing left, so you can't go back up.

  • And the moon's gravity field is so lumpy that

  • eventually, you'll wander around to a point where

  • you impact. It's a trade. You go as low as you

  • can to get the science and then, the price you pay

  • is eventually you have to impact.

  • Narrator: At every milestone, the LADEE spacecraft

  • and team performed well and achieved all of their

  • goals for the mission.

  • Instrument testing and data collection went

  • extremely well throughout the mission,

  • originally planned for a total of 160 days.

  • Efficient management of the spacecraft's fuel

  • resources allowed the mission to continue

  • collecting data into April of this year.

  • After descending to its final orbital altitude,

  • LADEE completed more than 100 orbits of the Moon

  • at extremely low altitude, giving the science team

  • a unique opportunity to collect data above the

  • lunar surface.

  • About the size of a large vending machine, LADEE

  • was designed and built at NASA's Ames Research

  • Center at Moffett Field, California.

  • NASA Mission Control: 2...1...zero...ignition...

  • (Roar of rocket engines)

  • NASA Mission Control: and liftoff of the

  • Minotaur Five with LADEE.

  • Narrator: Launched in September 2013 from NASA's

  • Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia, LADEE began

  • orbiting the moon on October 6 and gathering

  • science data on November 10.

  • The primary goal of the mission was to collect

  • data about the thin lunar atmosphere and the

  • amounts of dust that are in it at multiple

  • altitudes.

  • Rick Elphic: At higher altitudes, we saw very few

  • dust particle impacts. But the lower we went

  • with LADEE, the more we saw. And it's a very,

  • very steep rise. So if you're operating

  • with spacecraft very close to the surface

  • of the moon, as you would with a robotic lander

  • or a human lander, you might need to consider

  • the fact that you've got more dust there

  • in the way, as you come in.

  • Narrator: While the spacecraft has finished its

  • job, the LADEE science team is busy working with

  • their data and hope to announce their discoveries

  • within the next few months.

  • (Electronic Sounds of Data) (Musical Tones)

LADEE Mission Control: All stations, this is

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NASA Completes LADEE Mission with Planned Impact on Moon's Surface

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    richardwang posted on 2014/04/25
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